I started my collection with the Organic EcoSystem For One from ECOBAGS and slowly expanded from there. I bought a few at Publix, extra produce bags and a wrap-n-mat from reusablebags, and I get a free tote bag every time I make a big purchase at Running Warehouse. I also have a few tote and drawstring bag I've gotten at races. I use my bags for everything, from any kind of shopping, to carrying my lunch to work, to carrying my clothes/gear to the gym. I even have a pannier tote bag for my bike. I plan to use smaller reusable bags (that I'll either purchase or sew myself) in lieu of wrapping paper or gift bags this year.
With a few exceptions, for which I am currently researching alternatives (e.g. ziplock bags), I use very few plastic bags. Since I have so many tote bags, it's easy to leave a big supply in the car so I don't forget for the next trip to Publix, Target, or the Farmer's Market. On the occasion when I do forget, I'll simply carry the item home without a bag, ask for paper bags (which I use to carry the excess cardboard recycling), or use the plastic bags for trash in our small garbage cans at home. If you still have an excess of plastic bags, here are 99 Reuses for Plastic Bags.
Below is a list of my favorite products and sites to buy them. How about you, what are your favorite products to reduce the amount of plastic you use on a daily basis?
- produce bags - great alternative to those thin plastic bags at the produce section; I also use them to carry all kinds of other small stuff, such as my workout accessories.
- wrap-n-mat - clever alternative to snack plastic bags, and it doubles as a placemat.
- pannier tote bag - the perfect way to carry stuff when I bike to work, or for a trip to the farmer's market. It's easy to install and it fits a LOT.
- reusablebags.com - this site has a huge selection of bags for shopping, carrying your lunch, packing a sandwich or a snack, and water bottles
- ecobags.com - an alternate site to reusablebags.com
- Or you can make your own: 13 Ways to Make Cool Reusable Shopping Bags for Free
- Reusable Shopping Bags: Which Is the Greenest of Them All?
- 6 Ways to Make Reusable Bags Work for You
- What's the Big Deal with Forgetting Your Reusable Bags?
- Tote Your Reusable Bag with Dignity
- 13 Ways to Make Cool Reusable Shopping Bags for Free
- 99 Reuses for Plastic Bags
- More articles on Plastic Bags at Planet Green